Gray Matter Marketing, 2018 in Review

As we wrap up 2018, it’s time to reflect and think back on the amazing year we’ve had! First, the entire Gray Matter Marketing Team wants to extend a big ‘thank you’ to all of our participants, volunteers, sponsors, vendors, staff and partners who made each and every event happen. Our impact on communities and the quality of our events wouldn’t be as great as they are without each person!

In 2018, we hosted 17 events, starting in January with the Rhode Island Brew Fest and culminating at the Vermont 10 Miler in November.  All together, we saw approximately 24,600 event participants cover more than 115 miles of roadway or bike path. At our finish lines, we awarded nearly 18,000 finishers medals to deserving runners, walkers and cyclists.  

These events happen with lots of hard work from our full-time and our part-time staff, as well as our volunteers. This year, we estimate: 500+ buckets and bins washed, 60,000+ bottles of water moved (at least twice each), 2,000+ traffic cones packed up and placed on roads, 250+ cardboard boxes of t-shirts stacked, un-stacked and re-stacked, 200+ folding tables carried and set out, and more than 1000 cases of beer sorted and placed. 

Two of our events this year were new: the Portland 10 Miler in April, and the Wells Brew Fest in July. The Portland 10 Miler also marked the launch of our New England 10 Miler series, a three-event series including Portland, Newport and Stowe in which runners who completed all three events received an additional medal and shirt in Vermont. More than 350 runners registered for the series in 2018, a number we’ve already surpassed in registrations for 2019!

2018 was also an award-winning year for our events. The Amica Newport Marathon was named the top marathon in Rhode Island by Race Raves, the Amica Newport Half Marathon was named one of the top 20 best half marathons in the USA by BibRaves.com, the Ocean Road 10K was named one of the top 15 best 10Ks in the USA by BibRaves.com, the Craft Brew Races Newport was named one of the top 15 best 5Ks in the USA by BibRaves.com, and we will have a few more awards to announce in the coming weeks once they are made public! 

Through our events, we were able to work with more than 50 regional and national non-profits. (see below for a list). Between direct donations from Gray Matter Marketing, event proceeds and funds raised by event participants, we made close to $356,000 in impact on these organizations just this year!

We had five incredible interns join us this year from Salve Regina University and Roger Williams University. We enjoyed showing them the ropes of event planning and marketing, and we certainly learned from them as well!

The Gray Matter Marketing office closes between Christmas and New Years, and we’re looking forward to the break so that we can prepare to launch an even more successful 2019. 

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Sincerely,

Matt, Drew, Jon, Claire & Lisa

2018 Charitable Partners

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Center

Rhode Island Brewers Guild

Boys and Girls Clubs of Newport County

Child and Family Services

Fanconi Anemia Research Fund

Fort Adams Trust

Narragansett Historical Society

YMCA of Newport County

A Wish Come True

Ronald McDonald House of Providence

Rogers High School Athletic Boosters Club

C. Thomas Clagett, Jr. Memorial Clinic and Regatta

Spurwink Services 

Clean Ocean Access

Middletown Youth Football and Cheerleading

Massachusetts Craft Brewers Guild

BoysTown New England

Aquidneck Land Trust

Meeting Street

Rotary Club of Bristol RI

Rotary Club of Jamestown RI

Jamestown Pack 1 Cub Scouts

Stowe Land Trust

Honor Mae Meunier Trust

Boys Scouts, Troop 1 Jamestown

Sojourner House

Samaritans

Star Kids

Newport Gulls

Ocean State Waves

Save the Bay

Salvation Army

Maine Brewers Guild

Special Olympics

Lucy’s Hearth

J. Arthur Trudeau Memorial Center

Womens Resource Center

Sail to Prevail

Newport County YMCA

Looking Upwards

Sail Newport

Susan G. Komen

Access Point RI

Daffodillion

Rotary Club of Bristol RI

Payton Elizebath Watson Memorial Foundation

March of Dimes

RI Hospital Pulmonary Hypertension

Boys and Girls Club of Newport County

Jamestown Fire Department